Chip Imker’s loss serves as reminder about local heroes

A sense of pride and accomplishment was evident as the family of Chip Imker spoke about his life during a press conference last week.

Chip, 35, died last week following an unfortunate accident at the Cambridge Fire Hall. Chip had been a member of the volunteer Cambridge Fire Department for about 18 months.

As the news about Chip’s death began to spread amongst our community, we were all in shock to learn about the loss of a local hero.

Often times, I feel we forget about the dangers our local law enforcement, firefighters, and first responders face every day on the job.

Chip’s death was an all too unfortunate reminder about the dangers those face who serve in these capacities to help protect and keep our communities safe.

While I didn’t know Chip personally, my heart sank as I listened to his family talk about his short life, and my gaze would glance over to his two young sons.

Yes, Chip was a firefighter, but he was also much more. He was a beloved father, son, brother, partner, soldier, private business owner and wrestling coach.

As Chip was laid to rest this past Memorial Day weekend, you could see the impact he made in people’s lives as hundreds filled Cambridge-Isanti High School to mourn his loss, and approximately 100 fire trucks participated in his procession.

Our law enforcement and first responders are not in their positions to make a lot of money. They are in their positions because they genuinely care about protecting and serving the public, and do so knowing the dangers they face each and every day on the job.

Like the rest of the community, and those across the state, our thoughts and prayers will forever remain with the family of Chip Imker.